Friday Notes 083 - December 13 2019
This week was full of Christmas stuff, including a 1am wake up to rescue a fallen tree and the ornaments that took a plunge. Surprisingly, only three were broken and they’re all fixable. Also, my 5-year-old decided to get up 6 times between 1-5 when I got out of bed. Yes the next day was a long day, but on we go putting one foot in front of the other.
> We all make mistakes. None of us are perfect. Successful late bloomers have become experts at quickly moving on from their slipups withouth beating themselves up. - [Late Bloomers](https://amzn.to/2QDGOtJ)
If you were on the email list you’d be reading about me teaching my kids about the importance of recovering from mistakes well. I’m also talking about how I learned that lesson with my business and what changes I made when I learned from my failures.
> If you’ve found my content helpful I’ve opened up a [Patreon page](https://curtismchale.ca/patreon). You can help ensure that more helpful content keeps coming.
## I Shipped
[Monday I did a video and post on the iPad Apps I use to get my work done every day](https://curtismchale.ca/2019/12/09/the-favourite-apps-of-an-ipad-based-web-developer). From writing to development to editing video and silencing audio hum, there is something in the post for you.
Wednesday I put together a [video of me muddling my way through setting up Eero](https://curtismchale.ca/2019/12/11/improving-my-wifi-with-eero) at home to improve the WIFI for everyone else in the house. I have the newest devices and so mine worked fine, but Plex and the older iPad’s were having issues. I’m happy to say that Eero fixed it all, even if I did drop from 300mbps wireless to 200mbps. Of course in my office I’m wired in on my iPad so I get my regular 300+.
## Friday Five
**1 Good Things Are Hard and Have High Failure Rates, We Should Still Try**
> If we made all our decisions based on the actually odds of success, we’d rarely attempt anything risk or achieve anything significant. - [Late Bloomers 212](http://www.amazon.com/dp/1524759759/?tag=blogcurtismchale-20)
Many of the freelancer’s that were my “peers” when I started aren’t freelancing anymore. Sure we see a few that have built companies instead, but I’m not counting them since they still work for themselves. I’m talking about a bunch that couldn’t run a business, couldn’t get enough clients, spent themselves into oblivion...
If you were to look at my cohort and then decide if you wanted to take the risk, you’d see maybe an 80% failure rate. Would you want to embark on a journey that had an 80% failure rate?
Yet, working for yourself is idolized. I love it and while I’m open for other opportunities, it would have to be something truly amazing for me to take a job elsewhere.
The things we want are hard, we may fail.
That doesn’t mean we shouldn’t bother trying.
**2 Lightweight Hack to Get Attention Back When You Need It**
[Nice lightweight hack to get some attention back from your devices when it’s crucial you focus](https://www.calnewport.com/blog/2019/12/06/the-advice-i-gave-my-students/).
> I suggested that my students try this for one week while studying for their exams. I further suggested that they actually record on a calendar or in a journal whether or not they succeeded in following the rule 100% for the day. One slip to check social media, or glance at email, or look up a website, and they don’t get to mark the day as a success.
> I suggested that my students try this for one week while studying for their exams. I further suggested that they actually record on a calendar or in a journal whether or not they succeeded in following the rule 100% for the day. One slip to check social media, or glance at email, or look up a website, and they don’t get to mark the day as a success
**3 Ben Brooks on Why You Should Ditch Your Laptop for an iPad Pro**
[Ben Brooks on Why You Should Ditch Your Laptop for an iPad Pro](https://brooksreview.net/2019/11/why-you-should-ditch-your-laptop-for-ipad-pro/). Here are a few of my highlights.
> Why do people care about battery life? Who needs to carry a charger? These are the basic questions I find myself thinking about now that I have been on an iPad Pro for four years. I remember the days of carrying a MacBook, and needing to make sure it was fully charged or I had a charger nearby, worrying about getting ‘good’ spots next to outlets. That’s not an issue with iPad Pro — the battery is fantastic almost without fail.
I even said in my [iPad Pro EDC video](https://youtu.be/HqYpQv5NyqI) that I don’t carry a battery when I’m out an about with my iPad even for 10 hours because it still has lots of charge left. Just like Ben, I also love not even thinking about which seats have a power outlet. I only consider where I want to sit because my iPad will last the whole time I’m working.
> On a MacBook I fly between screens, windows, and apps with ease, getting exactly what I want with minimal time — all a few keystrokes away. It was routine that during a moment for though, to flip to something else for, check it out, then go back to the task at hand.
[I also agree here and did a video on why I think the iPad is a more focused operating system](https://curtismchale.ca/2018/11/05/operating-system-windowing-and-focused-productivity-hypothesis-on-why-ios-feels-more-productive/).
Here I disagree with Ben though.
> Something really fascinating happens when people open a laptop: they get to work. They check email, they have a million tabs, tons of apps showing progress on many tasks/projects, they have tabs for social networks, half in progress projects abound. People do stuff. They are sucked in — unlikely to step away anytime soon. However, when I see people use an iPad they use it for one thing — the thing they grabbed it to do — and then they go back to life.
The people in my family get sucked into their iPad’s all the time. They open it to do email but then get on Facebook or something else and good luck getting their attention any time before midnight when they realize it’s way to late and they should be in bed. It’s also easier to carry it around and get on it in a moment, so computer use around my house has gone up as they residents use their iPad’s more.
**4 We Need to Support People That Quit Stuff**
[Justin Jackson on the importance of quitting stuff](https://justinjackson.ca/moving-on).
> For most people, It will take multiple attempts to find something that works. If you keep doing what's not working, how will you ever find what does work?
I think another key idea to remember is that whatever you’re doing now was a commitment you made at a different time in your life. I made the commitment to be on the board of a local school 6 years ago. Before I had 3 kids. Before my wife worked and I had to be done work every day at 3pm.
Before the car was in use every night of the week.
If I was asked to make the same commitment now I would say no because it wouldn’t fit with my life.
That begs the question, why would I continue with the commitment now given that I wouldn’t take it.
**5 Every Winner Begins as a Loser**
[So you do have to fail first to be successful](https://www.scientificamerican.com/article/failure-found-to-be-an-essential-prerequisite-for-success/)
> The takeaway? “Every winner begins as a loser,” says Wang, associate professor of management and organizations at Northwestern’s Kellogg School of Management, who conceived and led the study.
Now it’s not persistence, repeated failure, that marks people that succeed eventually. It’s taking the time to figure out which parts work, which parts didn’t, and then making changes to what you’re going do to next so that you increase your chances of success for your next try.
Are you doing this when you fail?